An Egyptian blogger in Israel to promote peace. Some of the best online hoaxes of 2012. And researchers are asking for web users’ help in studying the Tanzanian savannah
Egyptian blogger visiting Israel to promote peace
A visit to the grave of Yitzhak Rabin, a talk at the Hebrew university of Jerusalem … Egyptian blogger Maikel Nabil is currently touring Israel to promote peace, one month on Israel’s military assault on the Gaza strip.
Imprisoned for 10 months last year for criticizing Egypt’s army on his blog, Maikel Nabil became a symbol of the uprising against the ruling military, tasked with overseeing Egypt’s political transition following the ouster of Hosni Mubarak.
But, Maikel Nabil, who comes from a Christian background, remains a controversial figure in his country. A pacifist activist, he refused to complete his military service, and has on a number of occasions professed support for Israel, thus tempering public sympathy for him in Egypt.
But in spite of criticism from his fellow citizens, some of whom call him a traitor, the blogger continues his campaign, and is documenting this visit to Israel, which was organized by the NGO U.N. Watch, on Twitter. He has been openly critical of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his government, and urged the people of Israel to oppose the actions of their army.
The best online hoaxes of 2012
Technological advances have made the web perfect ground for practical jokers, some more talented than others … here’s a look at some of the best online hoaxes of 2012…
This is the latest video to have hit the online headlines: we see footage purporting to show a golden eagle snatch and then release a toddler, in broad daylight, in a park in Montreal, Canada. Incredible images that soon went viral, sparking huge global interest and generating a great deal of discussion on social media. But the video is actually a hoax and was put together by four students at a computer graphics school for their 3D animation and digital design course. The clip has been viewed over 31 million times on sharing platforms.
Here’s another video that well and truly fooled us in 2012 it was produced by Dutch artist Floris Kaayk, who specializes in animation and special effects. Millions of people across the globe believed he was able to fly a few hundred meters using wings he had made himself, and by flapping like a bird. 8 months of hard work went into making this highly effective hoax.
The Russian prankster who made this video claimed to have filmed a mammoth, a species that became extinct over 10 000 years ago, crossing a Siberian river. The video did not rack up quite as many hits as the two we’ve just looked at, but did get several thousand web users wondering …
And finally some jokers have been making the most of the festive season to get one over web users. This clip is currently doing the rounds online, making out electricians from Brighton in the UK have been voicing their anger with the town council by including a variety of rude images and messages in the Christmas Light installations. It is again a hoax and was put together by a British satirical website called “The Poke” …
To get a closer look at wildlife in the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania, researchers have set up hundreds of camera traps, with movement sensors that are triggered when an animal walks past. Millions of photos have been taken, and web users can analyze them on the site “Snapshot Serengeti” to help scientists identify the different species living in the nature reserve and study their behaviour.
“Statue attack” photo craze takes the internet by storm
Cupid suddenly becomes a brawler, a lion sinks its teeth into its prey … The “statue attack” photo craze sees some less than friendly statues come to life : This new phenomenon, known as “statuing” has become an instant mega hit on social networks and involves posing alongside a statue and pretending it’s attacking you…
Video of the day
We’ll soon be saying goodbye to 2012 … and this satirical video features some of the people and stories that have hit the headlines over this eventful year. A perfect musical round up of the past twelve months, covering happening like Barack Obama’s re-election, the Gangnam style phenomenon, as well as the conflict in the Middle East and Lance Armstrong’s fall from grace in the doping scandal..